Wednesday, 10 April 2013

Story Hunt: A Low-Cost Kids Day Out...

During the Holidays, it can sometimes be tricky to try and think of ways to fill the time, especially if the kids are having more than a week off school. The holidays can also take quite a hit on your bank balance if you are spending out on activities each day. A quick trip to the local children's farm can set a family back the best part of £40 with lunch, a day trip to the aquarium or a theme park can cost even more. Even a quick swim can cost at least £10 these days. 

Sometimes, it is good to come across an activity which actually turns out to be more low cost than first thought.

Last Friday, eldest and I embarked on a day out with the intention of visiting the Roald Dahl Museum. When we got there, we discovered that the waiting time was too long to go in. The person on the entrance very helpfully pointed out the Roald Dahl Village Trail - a short walk which takes you around the local area of Great Missenden where Roald Dahl lived. 

Roald Dahl was inspired by the scenery and everyday occurrences around him. He carried around with him an 'ideas book' for his stories, and would write and sketch ideas as he went about his daily life. 

As I'm sure you are aware, eldest loves writing stories, and so inspired by Roald Dahl, she came up with the idea of going on her own story hunt as we walked in his footsteps around the local village. Armed with her very own 'story ideas book' which we purchased in the museum gift shop, eldest decided that she wanted to walk around the local area, and let the scenery inspire her and give her ideas for her stories.

I was actually really impressed with how much eldest used her observational skills as we followed the map route through the High Street and up to the local church. The things that she saw were things that I would not have ordinarily noticed, and she came up with imaginative ways to incorporate them into her story. We found some Ivy, and so she decided to call her main character Ivy, and another character 'daffy' after some daffodils she found. We crossed a bridge, which she sketched and came up with an idea for. Some lights in a shop reminded her of chandeliers for her castle. A passing helicopter provided inspiration, as did the beautiful church we visited. 

We had a fun afternoon together walking around the area enjoying the outdoors and looking for story ideas.  Eldest is hoping that our walks to sketch story ideas will become a regular occurrence. I think that they are a great way to inspire kids to use what they know, and what's around them as the foundation for their stories, poems, drawings, or even photo's and videos. It also gets them out in the open enjoying some fresh air, and best of all, it's a low-cost way to spend an afternoon giving kids confidence in what they enjoy doing. 

Eldest is currently working on her finished story, which she will share once it's completed.

Do your kids go on story hunts or similar? We would love to hear about them if you decide to go on one!

We are entering our story hunt activity into the Sunday Showcase

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